A Conversation With My Daughter's Boyfriend

A Conversation With My Daughter’s Boyfriend

I was sitting and talking with Bella’s boyfriend and he had several questions to ask my about injury. This young boy has recently turned 17 and is quite mature for his age. He asked me if I could describe the feeling of paralysis and I had him do the finger experiment. He asked about various sensation levels. He asked if it felt anything like you’d experience with a limb falling asleep with the pins and needles sensations. Before all of this he asked me if it would be okay to have an open conversation about my SCI. He has a genuine fascination with all things medical and wants to follow in his mother’s footsteps and become a veterinarian. Read more

WHO, WHAT, and HOW vs. WHY? (Now there’s a vague heading)

WHO, WHAT, and HOW vs. WHY? (Now there’s a vague heading)

I suppose this first one’s for me. I’ll take it.

Like every other wisdom-toting, hot-shot twenty-five year old, I have a story to tell. Perhaps coincidentally, as I find myself approaching the 6 year mark of paralysis (having confessed my spinal cord injury testimonial to sweet little old ladies, church prayer circles, pseudo-concerned college professors, and awkward first date subjects ad nauseam) I also find myself stumbling upon a platform. Regardless of its size or prominence, I have a platform. Not a platform of authority, reverence, or of fortuitous counsel (not yet the wheelchair-yoda I aspire to one day be), but one of interested and empathetic eyes that I may have never been privileged to reaching otherwise. Read more

Why I’m Thankful This Year

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Great food, good times with family, and a reason to look back and think of all of the reasons I have in my life to be thankful. Once again my family was faced with huge changes this year. My wife battled lymphoma not once, but twice. It transformed into a much more aggressive cancer and we had to face the possibility of no longer having her with us once again, but she beat it after a long hard battle with chemo. I had a heart attack, a pacemaker put in me, and a spinal fusion. I have 3 beautiful healthy screaming daughters and our family is complete. My life is blessed. I am no longer wondering daily what the doctor will say tomorrow. We still face the check ups and getting to that 5 year remission mark, but I know if anyone can do it then it’s my wife. I’ve cut a lot of drama from my life this year by removing people who were not interested in me as a person, but only what I could do for them as a person. I am now home schooling my children full time and able to spend time helping them grow and to learn. Bella is now caught up academically to other children her age is now in the 10th grade. As terrifying as that thought is I could not be more proud of her. Tay has decided to become a “rabbit rancher” this year and has 2 giant Flemish rabbits of her own. She also moved out of her bedroom and into her playhouse in the playroom. I didn’t get the memo that 5 was the new 18. These kids grow up so quickly don’t they? My baby Olivia has taken her first steps and is well on her way from turning from my only baby and into a big little girl.I know that soon I won’t be able to catch up to her or escape her tiny terrorism, what is going on with baby teeth? All I can say is thank you Jesus for letting me survive this first year of parenting a baby. Teenagers and toddlers have nothing on an infant. They own you and they know it. I am so thankful to have been blessed to have been driven crazy by the sounds of those screams. Nothing could have prepared me for the changes that were brought into my life this past year. Some were wonderful, some were devastating, but I am thankful to be able to say that I have a true selfless love in my life that helped to guide me through them all. I don’t know where I would be in this world without my family, but I know that I would have a lot less to be thankful for in life.  Read more

To My Future Significant Other

To My Future Significant Other

To my future significant other: On love or something like it in a disabled and abled partnership Read more

Marriage Rules

Marriage Rules

Rules for a successful happy marriage from the male perspective

I may have only been married for one year, but what a roller coaster year it has been. I’ve made mistakes, huge mistakes, and I am learning from them. I’ve had great successes as well. I want to please my wife in every aspect of life. I want to be a partner to her, not a ring on her finger. There are several things I have learned over the past year that have spun my head around. Who knew being married would be so wonderful and confusing at the same time? I obviously didn’t, or I wouldn’t have been so confused when I made a comment and my wife’s head did this weird exorcist type of maneuver. I was waiting for the pea soup to come flying out of her mouth. It was much worse than that. She told me it was “fine”. If you’re not married you may not know that fine is nowhere in the ballpark of fine. Fine coming from your very angry woman means you better sleep with one eye open while you’re out camping in the dog house. I don’t know what you did to deserve the “fine”, but you better fix it and fast. Read more

Marriage Special Needs Parents

The Key to a Strong Marriage as Special Needs Parents

A Love Like No Other

“Daddy’s on the iPad!”, Gunnar yells from the living room. Roa squeals from his Childrite chair. I’m in the middle of getting bedtime snacks ready in the kitchen, as Bryan calls to “Facetime” with us. My hair is frizzed, all traces of makeup have been erased from my face, and dark circles ring my eyes. Yet I go running to the couch to catch up with my prince.

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Sex after an SCI

Sex After a Spinal Cord Injury

WARNING: This article contains adult content and may not be suitable for younger readers.

Sex! You mean you it still works?

This topic is usually brought up with the standard preface of “Can I ask you a personal question?”. Followed quickly by “Can you still have sex?”. OF COURSE WE CAN! People with disabilities are too often seen as completely asexual individuals that should have no desire to be intimate with another person. Well duh! I mean why would you if you can’t feel it? Ah…the normies crack me up! Sexual activity is perfectly normal, healthy, and needed in a relationship. Unfortunately, sex after a spinal cord injury is rarely discussed. The largest obstacle to achieving a gratifying sexual relationship post SCI is communication. Be open with your partner about your needs and spice things up a bit! Candles, massage oils, music, dirty talk, toys, and lingerie can go a very long way. Read more

Disability Dating

Happy Valentine’s Day

Oh Valentine’s Day the holiday of love, when we all splurge on flowers, cards, candies and other gifts for our loved ones, friends and the other important people in our lives. Whether you are a fan of this holiday or not, there are a few things that I would like to share with you. The first is a heartwarming photo of Jeff Roulston and his wife sharing a hug in his standing frame. Many of our customer stories, including Jeff’s, have wonderful photos of wheelchair users and their loved ones! Read more

Special Needs Dads

Involving Dads in the Life of Their Special Needs Child

Fathers play an important role in their child’s development. Research studies show that dads not only challenge their children to do more, but also help build language skills. Many dads have wonderful relationships with their children, but some dads have difficulty connecting with their child who has a disability. In this article we’ll learn some of the reasons why this happens plus a few strategies for getting dads to take a more active role in their child’s life.

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